We certainly won't like it, but the undeniable truth is that our government will have to one day do something to generate more tax dollars from gasoline. The mere thought sounds crazy, with $3 per gallon gasoline lording over us like the British government vs. the colonists circa 1775. The fact is that the federal gas tax of 18.4 cents per gallon hasn't gone up since 1993, and as a result, inflation is eating away at the tax revenue our government "needs." Cars are also gaining in fuel efficiency, and gas electric hybrids and more ethanol-powered cars are on the horizon. The bottom line: drivers are paying less and less per year in taxes for the right to drive a car.
Enter researchers from the University of Iowa Public Policy Center, who have developed a system for charging you by the distance traveled, instead of by the gallon of fossil fuel. 2,700 drivers from Maryland, Texas, Iowa, North Carolina, Idaho, and California are testing a device that records the miles driven and gives drivers a receipt for the amount of taxes that would be levied if the experiment was the real deal. The study is being done to gauge public opinion of such a radical shift in policy, while also gathering information from a very diverse group of areas.
As a blogger that loves to drive, this idea stinks to high tax Hell. Politicians are too scared to make the unpopular decision to tax the already high gas prices, so they're spending big research dollars to find an alternative way to stick us with a bill. It's not like people that drive less would get a break. Those people already drive very little, and as a result they buy less gas, so they pay less taxes.
[Source: USA Today via The Truth about Cars]